We have two tags representing 'executable programs':

An executable is a fully compiled program that can be run without further processing.

An exe is the executable file format used on Windows operating systems.

They could probably be merged, however I don't see why we have the tags in the first place.

  • They're both used between platforms (despite [exe]'s tag description to the contrary)
  • They don't add a useful filter to the question (judging from the solo follower between them),
  • They're far too broad for referencing specific programs, there's no 'area of expertise' being represented here.
  • They don't represent a specific problem space. Questions using this tag aren't having problems with executables, they're having problems with running executables from USB, or compatibility with Windows 8, (or even Linux). Sometimes the tags are used simply because the question mentions an executable which isn't even the crux of the issue.

With these points in mind, do you believe these tags should be burned?

  • 10
    we don't really need either of those
    – Sathyajith Bhat Mod
    Commented Jun 30, 2014 at 6:12
  • 1
    95 questions left!! Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 17:35
  • 1
    executable is now empty! Commented Jul 13, 2014 at 17:16

3 Answers 3


I agree with Sathya, they don't add any value and should both be removed.

To ease the process, I've merged .


If we need them, I think we should rename both to , which is ultimately the name of the .exe files. could be misinterpreted as "linux executable" which could be any file. BTW, I'm not sure that tags that represent generic file formats are specially useful, so I'm not very keen to keep them bare specific exceptions.

  • 1
    Why not pe or portable-executable then? Commented Jul 7, 2014 at 21:57
  • 1
    @0xC0000022L that still don't remove the ambiguity of non-windows executable.
    – Braiam
    Commented Jul 7, 2014 at 22:29
  • 2
    and windows-executable is less ambiguous how? Covering NE, PE, PE+ in their 32 and 64bit versions, not to mention the various architectures. Commented Jul 7, 2014 at 22:42

I disagree.
Since having tag [executable] doesn't mean yet, that it is about 'oh, I can't run this program!'.
Is DLL executable? -- in this example according to the proposed logic, the [dll] tag should be also obsolete?

  • 1
    Yes, they both are in Portable Executable (PE) format, but DLLs can't be "executed" itself. By using "DLL" tag one usually means .DLL file, and not .EXE file. So we don't have to remove/keep "dll" tag in case we remove/keep "exe" tag.
    – Jet
    Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 16:35

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